Happiness Jar

you look at a photo and think ‘I haven’t seen myself this happy in a while..’
i am following Elizabeth Gilbert‘s recommendation of writing at least one source of happiness per day (although I haven’t bought a jar yet, agenda suffices for now) and it feels amazing to have a few reasons for the day!
i must shortly mention here that I am a postdoc at Institut Pasteur in Paris since 3 weeks, eekk!
 
if your own smile soothes you, I think your heart is happy and that’s one of the signs from the universe assuring you that you are doing something right in somewhere right.. so i am grateful for this photo:
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then there is this guy who makes me feel so blessed on my way to Pasteur in the metro. as you change from RER B to Line 6 in the direction Etoile in Denfert Rochereau, he sits there and plays his harp. i bought his CD this morning despite not even knowing how to ask ‘how much’ in French. He is called Pascal Coulon, I wish I had access to his website too, maybe it is temporarily down, have a look: http://www.pascal-coulon-harpe.fr/
 
I went up 300 narrow steps to see Paris from the Dome of the Basilique du Sacre-Coeur de Montmartre today, and after the breathtaking view,
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i found these guys
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singing next to the basilica. when we got out of the dome they were singing ‘Stand by Me’, then they sang a song the lyrics of which I couldn’t understand, and just when I was about to leave, they started to sing ‘Hallelujah’.. Memories of the University of Nottingham and the A Cappella Soc came rushing in and of course I was singing my lungs out 🙂 🙂
Such a memorable day!

“Inspiration is trying to send me messages in every form it can—through dreams, through portents, through clues, through coincidences, through déjà vu, through kismet, through surprising waves of attraction and reaction, through the chills that run up my arms, through the hair that stands up on the back of my neck, through the pleasure of something new and surprising, through stubborn ideas that keep me awake all night long . . . whatever works. Inspiration is always trying to work with me. So I sit there and I work, too. That’s the deal. I trust it; it trusts me.”
Start reading this book for free: http://amzn.to/2eZFVXy

‘Like you, I am a letter writer..’

I love to see the page cover up with lines like a bathtub filling with warm water, and I love to sense the slight tension as the pen nib slides over the paper. Writing a letter holds such promise and excitement, and in preparing one I feel as if I am showing the same devotion as when I cook a fine meal for loved ones. I imagine the whole chain of people who touch the letter along its way, the expression on my friend’s face when the letter appears in his box, his curiosity as he deciphers those stamps, his expectancy as he picks up the letter opener and slits the envelope seal, and then, hopefully, his delight at reading what I have to tell him. But above all, I suppose I savor the most the intimacy that letter writing allows between two people, the possibility of standing as far back or as far forward as one wishes to convey a sentiment. I appreciate how you can hide secret thoughts behind words, or how you can step out in the spotlight with them.

-Katharine Branning, Yes, I Would Love Another Glass of Tea